Deryck Whibley Says Sum 41's Final Album Is the 'Record I've Always Wanted to Make' (Exclusive)

"It just felt like at this point the work is complete," the Sum 41 frontman tells PEOPLE of the band's 28-year recording career

<p>Burak Cingi/Redferns</p> Deryck Whibley performing in London in October 2022

Burak Cingi/Redferns

Deryck Whibley performing in London in October 2022

Sum 41 is ending their 28-year recording career on a high note.

On Friday, the band released their eighth and final album Heaven :x: Hell, a project frontman Deryck Whibley tells PEOPLE "encapsulates the entire journey of Sum 41."

"There's been ups and downs throughout our whole career, and the title of the album, Heaven :x: Hell, doesn't just represent the light and the dark sonically of this new record," he says. "It really is just what we've been through — extreme highs and extreme lows. It's the whole evolution of Sum 41 from beginning to end."

Heaven :x: Hell is a double album, with the Heaven side featuring 10 pop punk tracks and Hell side consisting of 10 heavy metal anthems.

"It covers the whole soundscape of what we do," Whibley says. "It just felt like at this point now the work is complete. It's the record I've always wanted to make, in a way. It has every sound that we've wanted to do, and I think we did it the best we've ever done it. It's bittersweet that it's the final, but I feel really good about it."

Related: Sum 41 Announces Final Tour Dates and Last-Ever Show Ahead of Their Separation as a Band

Whibley, 44, isn't saying his final goodbye to Sum 41 just yet. On April 19, he and his bandmates Dave Baksh, Jason McCaslin, Tom Thacker and Frank Zummo will kick off the U.S. leg of their final worldwide tour, Tour of the Setting Sum, in Omaha, Nebraska. The tour will wrap in in Norfolk, Virginia, on May 19.

"Like I said, we've gone through dark times and tough times, and things are really good," he says. "They've been really good for a long time, and we've worked at it and we enjoy playing these songs. We enjoy each other's company. We enjoy being on stage. Why not go do a tour where we love it instead of breaking up at the end of a bad tour or something? I don't want to break up because we're so tired of everything. I'd rather walk away while it's still so great and that's what we remember of it."

Related: Sum 41’s Deryck Whibley Shares Cover of Memoir, Walking Disaster (Exclusive)

<p>Steve Jennings/WireImage</p> Sum 41 in San Francisco in January 2002

Steve Jennings/WireImage

Sum 41 in San Francisco in January 2002

While the band has 20 new songs to choose from to play on tour, Whibley says fans can still expect to hear their classics, like 2001's "Fat Lip" and "In Too Deep."

"We've always been a band that likes to play music that people know," he says. "Playing new songs in general is tough for not only the audience, but for us too, because I don't like playing songs that people are just like, 'Ah, I never heard this song. I don't really know.' It's not enjoyable for anybody. I always like when a record's been out for a little bit and you can play songs and they've actually meant something to people. That's what is more fun to play. So we will play some new songs from this record, but we're not going to sit there and try to play 15 new songs and a couple old ones. It's going to be something from every album, probably."

Related: Sum 41 Rocker Deryck Whibley on Alcohol Addiction: How My Wife and Music Saved My Life

<p>Gallery Books</p> Deryck Whibley's new memoir Walking Disaster

Gallery Books

Deryck Whibley's new memoir Walking Disaster

After the tour is finished, Whibley will release his new memoir, Walking Disaster, on Oct. 8,

"As this chapter of my life felt like it was coming to an end, I felt like I'd rather do the book now and make it part of this chapter rather than move on from the band and then in five years or 10 years from now, bring up all the old stories to talk about," he says. "I'd rather do it all at once and leave this chapter behind and start a new chapter."

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